In the grass (a snapshot poem)

with thanks to Susan Ahlbrand who invited writing around an old snapshot today for #verselove at Ethical ELA.

A tribute to my grandmother, who had six children by age twenty-two, during the Depression. She outlived four of them. One baby boy died a few years before this photo was taken.

For those of you who read my poem for Earnie (my aunt Earline): she’s second from right, the child snuggled closest to her mother.

A pantoum for Day Twenty-Four of National Poetry Month

In the tall, tall grass
a mother’s determined love
covers a multitude of sins
revealed in time

A mother’s determined love
surviving day by day
revealed in time
burns at the roots of deprivation

Surviving day by day
her feisty, firebright glow
burns at the roots of deprivation
before the brokenness shows

Her feisty, firebright glow
covers a multitude of sins
before the brokenness shows
in the tall, tall grass

2 thoughts on “In the grass (a snapshot poem)

  1. Wow, Fran, this is powerful! I love how your beginning line “In the tall, tall grass” invites us in to your grandmother’s story like it’s a book. “In the tall, tall grass” at the end to me felt a little like relief from the “brokenness” or anguish your grandmother endured. It also felt soothing to read the same line that invited me in, but now is closing your grandmother’s story. It also made me want to go back to the beginning and read her story all over again, which I did.

    These first two lines of the third stanza “Surviving day by day/her feisty, firebright glow” made me feel happy for your grandmother. However, the happiness made the last line of the third stanza “before the brokenness shows” punch a deeper hole in my heart. You are such an excellent writer causing all these feelings! I’m so glad I read your poem today. Thank you for sharing. Would you mind if I copied your poem along with my response to use as a mentor poem for myself? I will put it in my binder with your name as the poet for me to study. You should definitely publish this heartfelt poem, Fran.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Gail, thank you for telling me that you found this poem so meaningful and that you’d like to hold onto it as a mentor poem. That’s an honor- by all means! Of course there’s lots more of the story NOT in the poem but I so treasure this analogy of the grass to a curtain momentarily parting & closing again.

      Liked by 1 person

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